Conservative (but thinking) law professor Richard Epstein of the University of Chicago – a brilliant commentator in a wide variety of legal fields – argues against the enforcement, recognition – and very idea – of Presidential signing staements – for, among other reasons, the following:
“Signing statements, I fear, could be the opening wedge to a presidential posture that judicial decisions may limit the president’s ability to use courts to enforce his policies, but cannot stop him from acting unilaterally. On this theory, the president could continue to order wiretaps and surveillance in opposition to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act after a court had determined that he has exceeded his powers–he just couldn’t use the evidence acquired in court. Different branches of government have different views of the law, yet the executive marches on. A major check on executive power goes by the boards.”
Astonishing. Bush’s toadies on the Supreme Court have already told him that constitutional violations are still constitutional violations, but the fruits of these violations can now be used in court (see, e.g., Hudson v. Michigan, Patane v. United States, and various and sundry other cases wherein dead Chief Justice Rehnquist, O’Connor, FFF, TTT, SSSSS, Mugwump, or Robots ruled the exclusionary rule does not apply to a deliberate Fourth, Fifth or Sixth Amendment violation.
Now, the “thinkers” behind Presidential signing statement want it the other way around in some instances: they want to bully the courts into allowing them to violate the law, only to then declare that they will continue to violate it anyway, just so long as the evidence isn’t presented in Court.
What won’t King Shit do?